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2018 Oscars: Record 92 Countries to Compete for Foreign Language Film Oscar

A record 92 countries will compete for the Foreign Language Film Oscar. Haiti, Honduras, Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Mozambique, Senegal, and Syria are first-time entrants. There were no disqualifications this year.

Just like last year with My Life as a Zucchini, Switzerland was the first official Foreign Language Film Oscar submission of the year. The film is about a group of women in a small Swiss village who band together and campaign for the right to vote, undeterred by the retaliations of their conservative neighbors.

Last year’s Oscar winner was Iran’s The Salesman. It was the second film from director Asghar Farhadi to win the prize. He did not attend the Academy Awards after President Trump’s travel ban announcement.

There are 25 submissions from female directors: Afghanistan, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Bulgaria, Cambodia, Croatia, Ecuador, Georgia, Hungary, Iran (a first for the Persian country), Laos, Luxembourg, Mexico, Netherlands, Palestine, Panama, Paraguay, Poland, Singapore, Slovenia, Spain, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand – an all-time record. There are also six LGBTQ-related films: Chile, Finland, France, Norway, South Africa and Taiwan.

Another record: most submissions from Africa ever (8).

Stat: Largest number of film from a single language: 14 (Spanish).

The list also includes high profile festival winners from Cannes: Sweden’s The Square (Palme d’Or winner), France’s BPM (Grand Prize winner) and Germany’s In the Fade (Best Actress winner). Heavy competition is expected from Oscar winner Angelina Jolie (her First They Killed My Father represents Cambodia) and Israel’s Foxtrot.

Stay tuned for the first official predictions from the Gold Rush Gang coming soon.

OFFICIAL submission list for the 2017 Foreign Language Film Oscar with the distributor, US release date, and trailer where available:

AFGHANISTAN – “A Letter to the President”
This is the 12th submission for Afghanistan. First time of Roya Sadat. Afghanistan has yet to receive an Oscar nomination. (Trailer)

ALBANIA – “Daybreak”
This is the 11th submission for Albania. First time for Gentian Koçi. Albania has yet to receive an Oscar nomination. (Trailer)

ALGERIA – “Road to Istanbul”
This is the 19th submission for Algeria. Sixth time for Rachid Bouchareb. Algeria has been nominated 5 times (Including three times for films directed by Bouchareb) and won once (1969’s Z). (Trailer)

ARGENTINA – “Zama”
This is the 44th submission for Argentina. First time of Lucrecia Martel. Argentina is the leader of South American countries in this category with 7 nominations and 2 wins (1985’s The Official Story and 2009’s The Secret in Their Eyes). (Strand Releasing) (Trailer)

ARMENIA – “Yeva”
This is the 5th submission of Armenia. First time of Anahit Abad. Armenia has yet to receive an Oscar nomination. (Trailer)

AUSTRALIA – “The Space Between”
This is the 11th submission for Australia. First time for Ruth Borgobello. Australia was nominated once, for 2016’s Tanna last year and on the shortlist once for 2009’s Samson and Delilah. (Trailer)

AUSTRIA – “Happy End”
This is the 41st submission for Austria. 6th time for Michael Haneke. Austria has been nominated 4 times and won twice (2007’s The Counterfeiters and Haneke’s 2012 effort Amour, which was also nominated for Best Picture and Best Director). (Sony Pictures Classics – 12/22) (Trailer)

AZERBAIJAN – “Pomegranate Orchard”
This is 7th Azerbaijani submission and the first since 2014. Third time for lgar Najaf. Azerbaijan has yet to be nominated or be on the shortlist. (Trailer)

BANGLADESH – “Khacha”
This is the 13th submission for Bangladesh. First time for Akram Khan. Bangladesh has yet to receive an Oscar nomination. (Trailer)

BELGIUM – “Racer and the Jailbird”
This is Belgium’s 42nd submission. Second time for Michaël R. Roskam. Belgium has been nominated seven times (including Roskam’s Bullhead from 2011), has been on the shortlist once (2015) but has never won. (Neon) (Trailer)

BOLIVIA – “Dark Skull”
This is the 9th submission of Bolivia. First time for Kiro Russo. Bolivia has yet to receive an Oscar nomination. (Trailer)

BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA – “Men Don’t Cry”
This is the 17th submission for Bosnia and Herzegovina. First time for Alen Drljević. They have one Oscar (2001’s No Man’s Land) and was on the shortlist once (2013). Both times for Danis Tanović films. (Trailer)

BRAZIL – “Bingo, the King of the Mornings”
This is the 47th submission for Brazil. First time for Daniel Rezende. Brazil has been nominated four times (In 1960, 1995, 1996 and 1998) and was on the shortlist once (in 2007). (Trailer)

BULGARIA – “Glory”
This is the 28th submission of Bulgaria. First time for the duo Kristina Grozeva and Petar Valchanov. Bulgaria has yet to earn an Oscar nomination but it was in the shortlist once (2009) .(Trailer)

CAMBODIA – “First They Killed My Father”
The is the 6th submission for Cambodia. First time for Angelina Jolie. Cambodia has been nominated once (In 2013). (currently available to stream on Netflix) (Trailer)

CANADA – “Hochelaga, Land of Souls”
This is the 43rd submission for Canada. First time for François Girard. Canada has been nominated 7 times, won once (2003’s The Barbarian Invasions) and was on the shortlist three times (2007’s Days of Darkness, 2008’s The Necessities of Life and 2016’s It’s Only the End of the World). (Trailer)

CHILE – “A Fantastic Woman”
This is the 22nd submission of Chile. Second time for Sebastián Lelio. Chile has been nominated once (2012’s No). (Sony Pictures Classics – 11/17) (Trailer)

CHINA – “Wolf Warrior 2”

This is the 31st submission for China. First time for Wu Jing. China has been nominated twice (1990’s Ju Dou and 2002’s Hero). (Trailer)

COLOMBIA – “Pariente”
This is the 26th submission for Colombia. First time for Ivan Gaona. Colombia has been nominated once (2015’s Embrace of the Serpent). (Trailer)

COSTA RICA – “The Sound of Things”
This is the 6th submission from Costa Rica. First time for Ariel Escalante. Costa Rica has yet to be Oscar nominated. (Trailer)

CROATIA – “Quit Staring at My Plate”
This is the 26th submission for Croatia. First time for Hana Jušić. Croatia yet to receive an Oscar nomination or appear on the shortlist. (Trailer)

CZECH REPUBLIC – “Ice Mother”
This is the 44th submission for the Czech Republic. Second time for Bohdan Sláma. The Czech Republic has been nominated 3 times and won once (1996’s Kolya). (Trailer)

DENMARK picks “You Disappear”
This is the 55th submission for Denmark. Second time for Peter Schønau Fog. Denmark has been nominated 12 times, won 3 times (1987’s Babette’s Feast, 1988’s Pelle the Conqueror, 2010’s In a Better World) and was on the shortlist once (2011’s SuperClásico). (Trailer)

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC – “Woodpeckers”
This is the 10th submission for the Dominican Republic but it has yet to be nominated.Second time for José María Cabral. (Outsider Pictures – 9/15) (Trailer)

EGYPT – “Sheikh Jackson”
This is Egypt’s 32nd. submission of Egypt. First time for Amr Salama. Egypt has yet to receive an Oscar nomination. (Trailer)

ECUADOR – “Alba”
This is the 6th submission of Ecuador. First time for Ana Cristina Barragán. Ecuador has yet to receive an Oscar nomination. (Trailer)

ESTONIA – “November”
This is the 15th submission for Estonia. First time for Rainer Sarnet. Estonia has been nominated once (2014’s Tangerines). (Oscilloscope Laboratories) (Trailer)

FRANCE – “BPM (Beats per Minute)”
This is the 65th submission for France, the only country to participate every Foreign Language Film Oscar competition. First time by Robin Campillo. France is one of the most successful countries in this category. First place in nominations with 39 mentions and second place in wins with 12 Oscars (Including 3 Honorary Oscars for 1948’s Monsieur Vincent, 1950’s French-Italian co-production The Walls of Malapaga and 1952’s Forbidden Games). Also, France was on the shortlist twice (in 2006 and 2012). (The Orchard – 10/20) (Trailer)

FINLAND – “Tom of Finland”
This is Finland’s 31st submission. Second time for Dome Karukoski. Finland was nominated once (2002’s The Man Without a Past) and was on the shortlist once (2015’s The Fencer). (Kino Lorber – 10/13) (Trailer)

GEORGIA – “Scary Mother”
This is the 16th submission for Georgia. First time for Ana Urushadze. Georgia has been nominated once (in 1996 for Chef in Love) and was on the shortlist once (2014 for Corn Island). (Trailer)

GERMANY – “In the Fade”
Since the reunification of Germany in 1990, this is the country’s 27th submission. Second time for Fatih Akin. As separate countries, West Germany submitted 29 times, was nominated 8 times and won once (1979’s The Tin Drum). East Germany submitted five times and was nominated once (1976’s Jacob the Liar). The unified Germany has been nominated 10 times, won twice (2002’s Nowhere in Africa and 2006’s The Lives of Others) and was on the shortlist 3 times (2011, 2013 and 2015). (Magnolia Pictures) (Trailer)

GREECE – “Amerika Square”
This is Greece’s 37th submission. First time for Yannis Sakaridis. Greece has been nominated 5 times but has yet to win. (Corinth Films) (Trailer)

HAITI – “Ayiti Mon Amour”
This is the first ever submission for Haiti and therefore the first for Guetty Felin. (Trailer)

HONDURAS – “Morazán”
This is the first ever submission for Honduras and therefore the first for Hispano Duron. (Trailer)

HONG KONG – “Mad World”
This is the 36th submission for Hong Kong. First time of Wong Chun. Hong Kong has been nominated twice (1991’s Raise the Red Lantern and 1993’s Farewell My Concubine). (Trailer)

HUNGARY – “On Body and Soul”
This is the 53rd submission for Hungary. First time for Ildikó Enyedi. Hungary has been nominated 9 times, won twice (1981’s Mephisto and 2015’s Son of Saul) and was on the shortlist once. (Trailer)

ICELAND – “Under the Tree”
This is the 38th submission of Iceland. First time for Hafsteinn Gunnar Sigurðsson. Iceland has been nominated once (1991’s Children of Nature) and was on the shortlist once (2012’s The Deep). (Trailer)

INDIA – “Newton”
This is the 50th submission for India. First time for Amit V Masurkar. India has been nominated three times (1957’s Mother India, 1988’s Salaam Bombay!, 2001’s Lagaan). (Trailer)

INDONESIA – “Leftovers”
This is the 20th submission for Indonesia. First time for Wicaksono Wisnu Legowo. Indonesia has yet to receive an Oscar nomination. (Trailer)

IRAN – “Breath”
This is the 23rd submission for Iran. First time for Narges Abyar and is the first time Iran has submitted a film directed by a woman. Iran has been nominated three times and won twice (both for Asghar Farhadi films, including The Salesman just this year). Iran holds the title as the Asian country with 2nd most Oscars in this category after Japan. (Trailer)

IRAQ – “The Dark Wind”
This is Iraq’s 8th submission. First time for Hussein Hassan. Iraq has yet to be nominated or appear on the shortlist. (Trailer)

IRELAND – “Song of Granite”
This is the 5th submission for Ireland. First time for Pat Collins. Ireland has yet to earn an Oscar nomination but it was on the shortlist in 2015. (Trailer)

ISRAEL – “Foxtrot” 50th. submission of Israel. First time for Samuel Maoz. With 10
This is the 50th submission for Israel. First time for Samuel Maoz. With 10 nominations and no wins, Israel is the biggest loser in this category. (Sony Pictures Classics) (Trailer)

ITALY – “A Ciambra”
This is the 64th submission for Italy. First time of Jonas Carpignano. Italy is the all-time leader in this category with 14 wins, including the very first Oscar for Foreign Language Film given to 1956’s La Strada and most recently to 2013’s The Great Beauty (plus including 3 Honorary Oscars before the creation of the Foreign Language Film category) and second place in nominations with 28. Italy was also on the shortlist once (2007’s The Unknown Woman). (Sundance Selects) (Trailer)

JAPAN – “Her Love Balls Bathwater”
This is Japan’s 64th submission. First time for Ryōta Nakano. Japan is one of the most prolific countries in Oscar history for this category having been nominated 12 times, winning 4 Oscars (including 3 Honorary Awards before the inception of the Foreign Language Film Oscar and one competitive win for 2010’s Departures) and was on the shortlist once (in 2010). (Trailer)

KAZAKHSTAN – “Road to Mother”
This is the 12th submission for Kazakhstan. Third time for Akan Satayev. Kazakhstan has been nominated once (2007’s Mongol) and once on shortlist (2009’s Kelin). (Trailer)

KENYA – “Kati Kati”
This is the 2nd submission of Kenya. First time for Mbithi Masya. Kenya has yet to earn an Oscar nomination. (Trailer)

KOSOVO – “The Unwanted”
This is the 4th submission of Kosovo. First time for Edon Rizvaloni. Kosovo has yet to earn an Oscar nomination. (Trailer)

KYRGYZSTAN – “Centaur”
This is the 10th submission for Kyrgyzstan. 4th time for Aktan Abdykalykov. Kyrgyzstan has yet to receive an Oscar nomination. (Trailer)

LAO PEOPLE’S DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC – “Dearest Sister”
This is the first ever submission for Lao People’s Democratic Republic and therefore the first for Mattie Do. (Trailer)

LATVIA – “The Chronicles of Melanie”
This is the 9th submission for Latvia. First time for Viestur Kairish. Latvia hasn’t been Oscar nominated yet. (Trailer)

LEBANON – “The Insult”
This is the 14th submission for Lebanon. Second time for Ziad Doueiri. Lebanon hasn’t been Oscar nominated yet. (Trailer)

LITHUANIA – “Frost”
This is the 10th submission for Lithuania. First time for Sharunas Bartas. Lithuania has yet to earn an Oscar nomination or a shortlist mention. (Trailer)

LUXEMBOURG – “Barrage”
This is the 14th submission for Luxembourg. First time for Laura Schroeder. Luxembourg has yet to earn an Oscar nomination or a shortlist mention. (Trailer)

MEXICO – “Tempestad”
This is the 50th submission for Mexico. First time for Tatiana Huezo. Mexico has been nominated 8 times, was in the shortlist once (2008) but it hasn’t won yet. It is the second biggest loser of this category. (Trailer)

MONGOLIA – “The Children of Genghis”
This is the 3rd submission for Mongolia. First time for Andrei Borissov. Mongolia has yet to be Oscar nominated. (Trailer)

MOROCCO – “Razzia”
This is the 13th submission of Morocco. Fourth time for Nabil Ayouch. Morocco has yet to receive an Oscar nomination but it was on the shortlist once (in 2011) (Trailer)

MOZAMBIQUE – “The Train of Salt and Sugar”
This is the first ever Oscar submission for Mozambique and therefore the first of Licinio Azevedo. (Trailer)

NEPAL – “White Sun”
This is Nepal’s 9th submission. They were nominated one time, on their first submission – 1999’s Caravan. First time for Deepak Rauniyar. (Trailer)

NETHERLANDS – “Layla M.”
This is the 50th submission for the The Netherlands. Second time for Mijke de Jong. Netherlands has been nominated 7 times, won 3 times (The Assault in 1987, Antonia’s Line in 1996 and Character in 1998) and was on the shortlist 3 times. (Trailer)

NEW ZEALAND – “One Thousand Ropes”
This is the 5th submission of New Zealand. Second time for Tusi Tamasese. New Zealand has yet to receive an Oscar nomination (Trailer)

NORWAY – “Thelma”
This is the 39th submission for Norway. Second time for Joachim Trier. Norway has been nominated 5 times and was on the shortlist once (2016). (The Orchard – 11/10) (Trailer)

PAKISTAN – “Saawan”
This is the 7th submission for PakistanFirst time for Farhan Alam. Pakistan has yet to receive an Oscar nomination (Trailer)

PALESTINE – “Wajib”
This is this Palestine’s 10th submission. Third time for Annemarie Jacir. Palestine has two prior nominations (2005 and 2013, both for Hany Abu-Assad films). (Trailer)

PANAMA – “More than Brothers”
This is the 4th submission for Panama. First time for Arianne Benedetti. Panama has yet to receive an Oscar nomination. (Trailer)

PARAGUAY – “Los Buscadores”
This is the 2nd submission for Paraguay. First time for Juan Carlos Maneglia and Tana Schembori. Paraguay has yet to receive an Oscar nomination. (Trailer)

PERU – “Rosa Chumbe”
This is the 24th submission for Peru. First time for Jaime Relayze. Peru has been nominated once (2009’s The Milk of Sorrow). (Trailer)

PHILIPPINES – “Birdshot”
This is the 29th submission of the Philippines. First time of Mikhail Red. The Philippines has yet to receive an Oscar nomination. (Trailer)

POLAND – “Spoor”
This is Poland’s 49th submission. Second time for Agnieszka Holland (as Polish submission). Poland has been nominated 10 times and won once (2014’s Ida). (Trailer)

PORTUGAL – “Saint George”
This is Portugal’s 34th submission. Second time for Marco Martins. Portugal has not received an Oscar nomination yet. It currently has the record of the most unsuccessful submissions by a country. (Trailer)

ROMANIA – “The Fixer”
This is the 33rd submission for Romania. First time for Adrian Sitaru. Romania has yet to get nominated but it was on the shortlist in 2012. (Trailer)

RUSSIA – “Loveless”
This is the 25th submission for Russia (since the dissolving of the Soviet Union in 1991). Third time for Andrey Zvyagintsev. Russia has been nominated 6 times (including for Zvyagintsev’s Leviathan in 2014), won once (1994’s Burnt by the Sun) and last year was on the shortlist for first time with Paradise. (Sony Pictures Classics) (Trailer)

SENEGAL – “Félicité”
This is the first ever submission for Senegal and therefore the first for Alain Gomis. (Trailer)

SERBIA – “Requiem for Mrs. J”
This is the Serbia’s 24th submission (which has been modern-day Yugoslavia since 1994). First time for Bojan Vuletić. Serbia hasn’t been nominated yet but it was on the shortlist once (2007’s The Trap). (Trailer)

SINGAPORE – “Popeye”
This is the 11th submission for Singapore. First time for Kirsten Tag. The Asian city-state has yet to receive an Oscar nomination. (Trailer)

SLOVAKIA – “The Line”
This is the 21st submission for Slovakia. First time for Peter Bebjak. Slovakia has yet to receive an Oscar nomination. (Trailer)

SLOVENIA – “The Miner”
This is the 21st submission for Slovenia. First time for Hanna Slak. Slovenia has yet to receive an Oscar nomination. (Trailer)

SOUTH AFRICA – “The Wound”
This is the 14th submission for South Africa. First time for John Trengove. South Africa has been nominated twice in consecutive years, won once (2005’s Tsotsi) and was on the shortlist once (2010’s Life, Above All). (Kino Lorber) (Trailer)

SOUTH KOREA – “A Taxi Driver”
This is South Korea’s 29th  submission. Second time for Jang Hoon. South Korea has yet to receive an Oscar nomination. (Trailer)

SPAIN – “Summer 1993”
This is the 60th submission for Spain. First time for Carla Simon. Spain has been nominated 19 times (third most nominated country after France and Italy), won 4 times (1982’s Begin the Beguine, 1993’s Belle Époque, 1999’s All About My Mother and 2004’s The Sea Inside – it is tied in third place with Japan for the most wins in this category) and was on the shortlist twice (in 2006 and 2010). (Oscilloscope Labs) (Trailer)

SWEDEN – “The Square”
This is Sweden’s 56th submission.Third time for Ruben Östlund. Sweden has been nominated 15 times, won 3 times (all for Ingmar Bergman films) and was on the shortlist 3 times. (Magnolia Pictures – October 27) (Trailer)

SWITZERLAND – “The Divine Order”
This is Switzerland’s 45th submission; they have been nominated 5 times, won twice (1984’s Dangerous Moves and 1990’s Journey of Hope), and were on the shortlist three times. First time for Petra Biondina Volpe. (Kino Lorber – October 27) (Trailer)

SYRIA – “Little Gandhi”
This is the first ever submission for Syria and therefore the first for Sam Kadi. (Trailer)

TAIWAN – “Small Talk”
This is the 43rd submission for Taiwan. First time for Hui-chen Huang. Taiwan has been nominated 3 times (1993’s The Wedding Banquet and 1994’s Eat Drink Man Woman) and won once (2000’s Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon). All nominations and wins have come from Ang Lee films. Taiwan was also on the shortlist once (2011’s Seediq Bale). (Trailer)

THAILAND – “By the Time It Gets Dark”
This is the 24th submission for Thailand. First time for Anocha Suwichakornpong. Thailand has yet to receive an Oscar nomination. (Trailer)

TUNISIA – “The Last of Us”
This is the 4th submission for Tunisia. First time of Ala Eddine Slim. Tunisia has yet to receive an Oscar nomination. (Trailer)

TURKEY – “Ayla”
This is the 25th submission for Turkey. First time for Can Ulkay. Turkey has yet to earn an Oscar nomination but was on the shortlist once (in 2008). (Trailer)

UKRAINE – “Black Level”
This is the 10th submission for Ukraine. First time for Valentyn Vasyanovych. Ukraine has yet to be nominated or appear on the shortlist. (Trailer)

UNITED KINGDOM – “My Pure Land”
This is the 15th submission for the UK. First time by Sarman Masud. The United Kingdom has been nominated twice (1993’s Hedd Wynn and 1999’s Solomon and Gaenor). (Trailer)

URUGUAY – “Another History of the World”
This is the 17th submission of Uruguay. Second time for Guillermo Casanova. Uruguay has the dubious honor of a full disqualification in this category after receiving their only nom for 1992’s A Place in the World, a film later classified as fully Argentinian. (Trailer)

VENEZUELA – “El Inca”
This is Venezuela’s 27th submission. First time for Ignacio Castillo Cottin. Venezuela has not been nominated but was on the shortlist in 2014. (Trailer)

VIETNAM – “Father and Son”
This is the 13th submission for Vietnam. First time for Lương Đình Dũng. Vietnam has been nominated once (1993’s The Scent of Green Papaya). (Trailer)

About Erik Anderson

Erik blames his mother for his love of all things Oscar, having watched them together since he opened his eyes. They also watched Miss Universe religiously every year (the pageantry!) and Erik came to the conclusion that the combination of these two things ultimately led him down the path to obsessing about awards and ACTRESSING. He began at GoldDerby, led by Tom O’Neill and then migrated over to Oscarwatch (now AwardsDaily), headed up by Sasha Stone before breaking off to create AwardsWatch. He is a member of the International Cinephile Society, GALECA (The Society of LGBTQ Entertainment Critics), the International Press Academy and is the founder/owner of AwardsWatch.

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